That's pretty good. Are you a writer by trade?Chris - this may be an exercise in futility. Two weeks ago, I compared my Coag-Sense 'Classic' and my PT2 to each other. The 'classic' gave me a 2.8, and the PT2 gave me a 3.0. This was a bit surprising, but they were well within any reasonable margin of error.
Same batch of strips, done within minutes of each other.
It might be fun to do the comparison. And it would be good to put the comparison on this or another thread.
I'm in Northridge.
I'm imagining the arrival of two people at a Jack In The Box, or a more REAL restaurant. They're both carrying boxes. They order (maybe) and take a seat at a table, sitting across from each other.
They open the boxes and take out some small devices that look like electronics. These aren't cell phones. They don't look like they play music. WHAT THE HELL ARE THEY? Then they take out these small foil envelopes, some tiny tube-like objects, and small, odd looking plastic things.
What the hell are these guys up to?
A manager walks to the table. 'Is there something I can help you with?'
One of the two says, 'no, thanks, we've got this.'
The manager repeats 'is there something I can help you with?'
The other man says, 'no, thanks, we're just testing our blood.'
The manager, confused, looks closely at the meters. They don't look likes something he's ever seen.
'Are you SURE you're okay?' the manager asks, increasingly confused.
By now, the meters are ready for a test. Both beep.
The men push the 'Test' button on this odd electronic device. They open the foil packets and remove plastic strips. They then push them into the meter. A countdown begins.
The manager may let this continue. Or, he may yell 'everybody out! It's a bomb.' Or, perhaps, police cars pull up to the door of the restaurant.
Or, perhaps, the manager says 'hey, my grandmother used to test her blood. Meters sure have improved.'
Then the men prime the incision device, pulling out a plastic piece, and squeeze below the first knuckle to get blood to pool in the fingertip. The machine beeps. The men put the plastic tube where they can easily get it, then they poke a hole in their fingertips, getting a good drop of blood. The transfer tube draws the blood into the tube, and the blood is deposited on the strip. Less than a minute later, the machine beeps.
A few minutes later, they try again. After filling the transfer tube, they TRADE TUBES. Each man is now running a test on the OTHER meter.
Finally, the food arrives.
The two men pack up their machines, strips, and incision devices. They might eat their food or drink their drinks, and talk a bit about self-testing.
And, as they walk out, the staff and managers follow them with their eyes, wondering what the hell that was all about.
Initially the transfer tube was a turn off, but once I got the meter and did some tests I find it far easier than the XS. The XS is actually more intimidating since you age to rush to get the strip out of the tube, then you get 180 seconds, all these rush items. The CoagSense is a more laid back approach, I can take. Unlike getting set up and taking the sample. Every strip is individually wrapped, and they are not fragile like the XS strips.Hey, Keithl - I tested both meters, and compared them to occasional lab tests, and the CoaguChek XS was always higher. For a while, using just one lab, it seemed like the lab results were the average of the two meters.
Personally, I prefer one that reports a bit lower than the labs -- this way, if I get a 2.0 on the Coag-Sense, I can be comfortable that my INR is AT LEAST 2.0 (and maybe higher). I wouldn't be as comfortable with a result of 2.0 on a CoaguChek XS.
You say that you were intimidated by the Coag-Sense. Was this because you had to use a transfer tube to move the drop from the fingertip to the strip? Once you've done it a few times (as you have), it's really no big deal (as you noted).
You are not the only dissatisfied Allere customer. I had problems with them and customer service was so bad, and I continued on up the chain of incompetence until I got to the VP of regulatory affairs....I have alot more things I could say about Alere but it would get me barred from this site.
I would agree and think this is a very sound assessment. An important part of understanding INR is that its meaningless to consider differences of less than (say) 0.2 because 1) there just isn't sufficient accuracy in the system anywhere 2) it makes essentially no difference to you in outcomes of any kind.
Once you consider how the number is produced you need to delve into a world of reagents and chemistry and physical movement cessation determining that shows that this is no "Vernier Caliper" for measuring the thickness of steel here. Consider this document:
which makes it clear that depending on reagent used there will be quite some variation in readings.